Black History Month Artists’ Mini-Conference Invite

Tees Valley Arts is organising two events to celebrate Black History Month, with the support of Teesside University, the Northern Rock Foundation, Platforma and Waka Waka Africa NE.

Both events will take place on Wednesday October 29th at Teesside University; there will be an afternoon event for invited guests only, and then an evening event which is free and open to all to come along and enjoy.

The Events

The Evening Event

(doors open 8pm)
Will feature the Crossings band, Shurooq Abu Alnas and her band (originally from Sudan), Reggae maestro Dennis Bovell, and John Peel’s favourite African musician – Kanda Bongo Man and his extraordinary Congolese Soukous band, and will take place at Teesside Uni’s Student Hub. It is sure to be a great night – and it’s free!!

The Afternoon Event

(doors open 4-8pm)
Is for people who are North Eastern artists (all and any artforms) who are either recently arrived in the UK, or from diverse backgrounds, or who practise a diverse artform, and/or for those people who have a particular interest in seeing those people and those artforms flourish. We will accommodate about 30 people, and hope to have representation from across the region.

Running Order

  • 4.00pm – 5.30pm conference/ conversation – what are our challenges, what have been our successes, what would improve things, next steps
  • 5.30pm – 7.00pm collaborative artwork led by Adrian Moule
  • 7.00pm – 8.00pm buffet supper
  • 8.00pm – evening event as above or free to leave

We will invite a couple of keynote speakers to make brief presentations, but the emphasis will be on networking and making links in a relaxed and enjoyable way.

All who attend will receive a contribution to travel expenses of £15 cash, to be paid on the day.


We are sending this invitation to people and links that we already know, and you are free to pass it on to others that you think would be interested. However, so that we can manage the numbers and ensure a good variety of people attending, anyone who wants to come MUST email to express their interest in attending, and then Rowena will email back in due course to confirm that they are welcome to attend, or conversely, that places are all filled.

Sorry if this sounds a bit like ‘you’re not on the list so you’re not coming in’, but as places are limited this seems like the best approach.


Please express your interest in attending by 9am Tuesday 14th October and we will endeavour to confirm places within a couple of days after that.

(The evening event is free though, and all are welcome – bring dancing shoes!)

If you require any further information please call Rowena Sommerville on 01642 265651 or 01642 264655. Please note Rowena only works Tuesdays-Fridays)

We very much look forward to meeting/ chatting/ dancing with you – let’s celebrate!